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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 35  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 64-68

A community-based study of postpartum depression in rural Southern India

Department of Community Medicine, Sri Ramachandra Medical College and Research Institute, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Vanishree Shriraam
Department of Community Medicine, Sri Ramachandra Medical College and Research Institute, Porur, Chennai - 600 116, Tamil Nadu
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijsp.ijsp_13_18

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Background: Depression is the most common complication postpartum affecting 10%–15% of women, contributing greatly to maternal mortality and morbidity, but the care availed is very low among the women who suffer. Objective: The aim is to study the prevalence of postpartum depression among recently delivered women in a rural population and the health care utilization pattern for the condition among women. Methodology: This was conducted as a population-based cross-sectional study in a rural population served by primary health center. All women in the study area who had a pregnancy outcome during the past 6 months and have completed 42 days since their last delivery were included in the study. The data on postpartum depression were collected using the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS). Results: There were 365 postpartum women in the study area who participated in the study. Mean age of the study participants was 24.5 years. The deliveries were Institutional in 97.8% of women. The prevalence of depression among the study women (an EPDS score of 10 and above) was 11%. Among women with depression, a history of depression before the last delivery was given by 42.5% of women. Only 7.5% of women had sought some form of health care for their problem. Conclusion: The study shows that the prevalence of depression among postpartum women is quite high and the health seeking for depression is very low. Health professionals and workers have to be trained to raise awareness, detect, and treat depression among postpartum women promptly.

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